By Tyler Blair--Eagle Staff Writer
When you study Virginia history, you may not find the name Nathan Atchue.
But soon, perhaps. Atchue has been making his own history.
Atchue, a 15-year-old runner here, is one of the fastest sophomores in Virginia. Ever. Literally.
Recently, Atchue posted a 5K time of 15:24, which MileStat.com gauges as one of the Top-10 fastest times in Virginia history. It is also currently the fastest time in the state.
"I was pretty excited about it," Atchue said. "I didn’t know until a while later, because I was tired from the race. That night, I looked it up and saw, but I didn’t think it would be official because it wasn’t a school race."
Turns out it was--and is--official.
While the time and accolade is a milestone for Atchue, several say it's no surprise.
“In middle school we look for the students who show a passion for running. You can usually tell who has a passion for running and who wants to pursue it after high school. Nathan showed that passion,” said Chris Williams, Atchue's coach.
Williams sees a lot of promise in Atchue.
“I'm really excited to see him fulfill his goals and his dreams. Whatever it takes. I know that Nathan had mentioned wanting to win a State Championship and I am excited to see him fulfill that whether it's for cross country or track.
One of those dreams is to still compete after graduation and at the next level.
“I do want to run after high school," Atchue says. "I haven’t thought much about where I really want to go, but if I can get into the University of Oregon, I would be super excited.”
Williams doesn't worry about where Atchue may end up.
"Whatever he does, I’ll be proud of him.," Williams said. "I mean he just gives so much to it. I consider it a privilege to call myself his coach."
While Atchue is excited about being one of the fastest in Virginia history, his head is with his team.
“My biggest accomplishment was probably winning the freshman race at the Foot Locker South meet, but my favorite race so far was Cross Country Districts last year when it was the whole team, and we were all having fun in the rain.”